turn-on

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He grabs me suddenly and yanks me up against him, one hand at my back holding me to him and the other fisting in my hair.” – E.L. James, Fifty Shades of Grey

Anastasia Steele is a simple girl and yet there is something about her that lures Christian in. The book says it’s her intelligence, her innocence, and her independence. I say there’s something in her skincare product that leaves her irresistible.

From Aphrodite to Avicenna, from Alexander to Cleopatra, and from Confucius to Christian Grey – each depended on the compelling aroma and healing benefits of a simple flower, Rose. Rose is the language of love and a hint towards pleasure. After the initial notes of Rose convince you to stay, Jasmine conquers as the Queen of the night. To this day, Rose and Jasmine blossoms decorate the bride and send a green signal for all that happens later. The mystical fragrance of Ylang Ylang pleases the senses and nurtures the sexual energies. Shatavari, notorious for its effect on long lasting love and lust, tries to unfold the mystery of Kama Sutra.

If there ever was a way to capture the essence of your desire for Mr. Grey, my Turn-on butter would be it. A promising aphrodisiac and a gift to women, a turn on is guaranteed!

Turn-On, my healing butter, pleases the senses, and nurtures the energies. 

yogi

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In today’s world of hustle and bustle, meditation apparently is the most efficient way towards Nirvana; at least that’s what everyone is saying. What no one tells me however, is exactly how to weed out the ever-growing thoughts from my brain, and how to quieten all that noise. If you lock me up in a room and dim the lights, you will witness the rush hour in my mind – appetizers for the party, do I look fat, job security, I need more shoes, flexible spending program, and annoying candy crush invitations.

Fear not, for I have found a way. The healing salve, believe it or not, does the magic. The enveloping aroma of lemongrass keeps my nose curious. I instantly become a little greedy and inhale all that there is. This greed relaxes my throat muscles and influences deep breathing. The fragrance, oh so synergized, brings a million dollar smile. And, in this mesmerization, I am able to detach myself from the appetizers, shoes, and the universe.

Lavender dissolves all fears. Lemongrass infuses positivity. Lemon energizes the mind.

Yogi, my healing salve, awakens the senses, but quietens the mind. 

don’t ever do this again, you moron!

Celebrations were in process and I was part of the food committee. Every ingredient was prepared and artistically laid out for the grand luncheon the next day, well all except one – cayenne pepper. It was 1:00am and peppers needed to be diced, sliced, or chopped. Someone had to do the dirty job and according to the looks from my mother, that someone was me!

Do yourself a favor and wear gloves, goggles, or borrow the costume from the movie ‘Gravity’ the next time you have to chop 20 cayenne peppers. My fingers, eyes, and tongue felt a sensation that has never been described before – the entire nervous system shook awake, gases exited from every hole, and I screamed with no voice coming out! Each signal to my brain carried a telegram – “Don’t ever do this again, you moron!”

According to the Gurus in the healing world, the same phenomenon actually helps with pain & inflammation. Cayenne pepper is extremely high in Capsaicin, which helps in reducing the amount of chemical that carries pain messages to the brain and hence, providing pain-relief.

Cayenne pepper with its powerful healing benefits is currently gaining buzz, and it sure is making its way into my next salve, the WOD wax!

what others say

WHY NATURAL?

“We know that we should eat organic food so we aren’t eating a bunch of pesticides and toxins with our food so why should we slather our skin with chemicals and toxins when it goes right into our bodies. The skin is our largest organ which is why it’s so important to make sure we are using the healthiest, most beneficial ingredients to keep us healthy.”

– Laura Primiano, Fitness Expert

CLEOPATRA’s SECRET

“Cleopatra, Queen of ancient Egypt, used milk to make her skin supple and glowing. Natural & handmade products are far better – they are more satisfying, enriching, and have minimal side-effects. When we prefer organic and fresh for what we take in, why not prefer organic and fresh for what we put on our skin.”

– Naina Rastogi, Fashion Entrepreneur

POWER of NATURAL MEDICINE

“I would use pure natural products simply because I try to rid myself of harmful chemicals. If I’m doing it on the inside by controlling my food why not do the same with my skin which is my very first contact with the world. My grandmother taught us the power of natural medicine and I still use it today. I trust simple ingredients and it gives me confidence in the fact, nature intended it for our use hence the natural occurrence.”

– Michelle Hydrick, Accounting Manager

my personal apothecary

My mommy’s mommy, my Nani had an undercover closet. No one knew what was inside but what came out of the closet were cures – fennel for digestion, pomegranate for cholesterol, clove for tooth ache, and turmeric as antiseptic. And then there were some complicated concoctions. She engaged in spiritual conversations and gave the warmest hugs. To this day, I remember her touch, her overflowing love, and her apothecary closet.

Roohism – a way to heal, a way to give, a way to smile, a way to live, is dedicated to my Nani, my very first spiritual guru, and my very personal apothecary.

With ginger for inflammation, black pepper for warmth, and chamomile for headache, my vision is to recreate the magic of natural remedies and bring the grandmothers of the world back in style.

smile

While you are reading this, just smile. You don’t have to reason, you don’t have to resist, you don’t have to like what you are reading – just smile, smile with your cheeks touching your eyes.

makkhan maar ke

astrology

Out of 7.125 billion, there are only a handful of humans who are dependable. I happen to know one such man and he is family. His first influence on me started with timeless discussions on astrology. Here’s a confession – I suffer from short term as well as long term memory loss but to this day, I can never forget the author Linda Goodman. I was probably only 9 or 10 years old and had other problems in life but the background of starry arguments stayed with me – arguments over how you can easily divide the world population exactly in 12 and expect everyone in that sector to share the same qualities, and how it’s the aftermath of movement and relative positioning of celestial bodies. I don’t have the answer to that question and I can’t force myself to believe the division-by-12 rule, but somehow the description of Aries defines me down to a tee. Anyways, after hours spent in this fruitless discussion, we would all be tired, forget about the stars, and start singing – ‘neele-neele ambar par’.

From those night-outs to this day, it has been a memorable journey – a journey full of ice cream sundaes, serious discussions about the purpose of life, senseless laughter, forgetting & forgiving, frosty trips to Manali, and countless aloo-gobhi-paneer parathas – makkhan maar ke! I have been welcomed, I have been loved, and I have been spoilt. But my favorite part about him, and what I admire the most is him just being there – in the bad times, at the toughest hours, without hesitation.

What you do creates a ripple effect and spreads across. What you give is priceless and with all your heart. So thank you for being there in good times and bad, in joy and tears, in sickness and health. Thank you from the bottom of my heart – you can always count on me.

5 minute vacuum

Technology may be pulling us forward, but our habits have all gone wrong. We wake up to the cacophonies of an iPhone. We engage in 13 actions and respond to 17 emails before even brushing our teeth. We get distracted constantly by constant text messages, useless Linked anniversaries, and invites to play Candy Crush Saga. And now we rely on technology to tell us how sound our sleep was. The goal of every vacation has shrunk to competitively capture the beauty on Instagram. The phrase ‘good morning, so good to see you!’ has been replaced with a lazy-ass soft chin-up movement. How many friends do we have on Facebook that we’ve never even said ‘hello’ to? Those five minutes of ‘nothing-to-do’ vacuum puts a scare and we quickly grab onto any piece of electronic item available in sight.

I wish to go backwards when the times were simpler – the days when your mom woke you up, the days when you ran to the mailbox in hopes of finding a hand-written letter, the days when you didn’t know who’s knocking on your door – lesser bills, blank calendars, and the days of calmer thoughts.

It won’t happen in a day, week, or a month – but slowly and gently, we could insert some old times. A few ideas that I’ve personally implemented:

Deactivate vibration, light-sensor, sounds, and notifications on cell phone. I’ll see that you called, texted, tagged when I see it. I started with constantly looking at my phone every 2 mins, but it has since decreased significantly. At least this way, I can give my full attention to the slice of hazelnut cake, a conversation, or even a thought. Writing this in a stretch also comes easy.

Leave cell phone home when going for crossfit and yoga. After 90 minutes of hard core effort in deep breathing and pushing away the stubborn thoughts, I see a few jumping on their phones eager and desperate to know what changed in those 90 minutes.

Forget your cell phone in the car when going for groceries. I can’t say for all, but grocery shopping brings a natural smile on my face – it’s a Disneyland for the cooking-enthusiasts. Picking just the right bunch of cilantro, comparing fiber content on 8 kinds of multi-grain breads, and choosing the top 2 from the 200 avocados that all look the same is a delight.

Interact once a day, choose to walk up to a person instead of calling or emailing. Say hi, share a joke, exchange a firm handshake, and collect points on human interaction.

Block it all and create a no-screen day – no TV, no iPad, no smart phone, and no laptop. Instead, spend a few hours at Barnes & Nobles, pick up a book to research on your next travel, the Anatomy of your spirit, the Economist, or get updated on the latest Hollywood gossip. If not a fan, walk to the farmer’s market and pick the top 2 avocados. Start a sketch book. Create a puzzle. Write a letter.

Relinquish and let others win – At a meeting, happy hour, or dinner, stack up your S4’s, iPhones, and the rest who think they’re even in the competition! The first one to pull their phone has to pay the bill. I recently forced my ex-boss and colleagues on this and guess who paid the bill?

Create a vacuum for 5-minutes. Think of nothing. Think nothing. Do nothing.

Smile. Create a 5-minute smile window. Smile for the good things in and around you. Smile while remembering a loving moment. Smile for that time when you farted and no one noticed. Smile for falling down in the water while learning how to paddleboard. Smile while thinking of me. Smile for it’s free with no disclaimers in tiny text. Smile just because this exercise feels ridiculous. If nothing, go ahead and click play!

pseudo cirque de soleil

I don’t know how time has flown and changed from dreading for a quiz to listening to Pitbull at the Aria resort in Vegas along with the other 2300 victims. The Ingram ONE welcome reception is at the pool side and the pseudo cirque de soleil charismatics are hired to distract us from the less-than-lustrous business conversations revolving around SMB, cloud, and the future of electronic data storage. The ingrained beats are an opportunity to upgrade my iTunes list. The luminous lights are making me squint my eyes and enjoy the platter full of accomplishments. The gin with ginger ale is making it all very easy. The perks seem sweeter since I started from nothing and pulled myself up inch after inch. It wasn’t easy or handed to me – the path came with a heavy load of speed bumps & challenges – ridicule, blame, discouragement, jealousy, and haters. But I kept my eyes on the destination, ignored the ignorants, and accelerated with a smile.

I don’t know what else there is but I’m enjoying every single bit of what this is – vivere nel momente

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live in the moment

pancakes venn

Let flour = past; egg = present; milk = future.

We are always making pancakes. At any given moment, we are either regretting the past or worrying about the future and in either case, our present becomes the victim. In scenario pasta, we let our past affect our present – we over analyze after the fact, we go through a realization phase, and we burden ourselves with regrets. In scenario omelette, we ruin our present worrying about the future – we surround ourselves with the 3 devils: paranoia, restlessness, and insecurity. We waste hours wondering, almost inviting our next attack. My favorite scenario is scenario batter where we pull ourselves out of the equation, grab some popcorn, and watch what becomes of our future as an audience.

What’s done is done and nothing can be done about it. We also have no visibility into what’s arriving – so why waste time reliving the past and fearing the unknown? Imagine mixing flour, egg, and milk together and then trying to segregate the ingredients in their original raw form. It is not only difficult, it is impossible. This mumbo-jumbo of past, present and future makes us crazy. No wonder we are exhausted, constipated, and REM-sleep deprived.

Remove the unnecessary, clear out your day, and gift yourself an extra time slot – go challenge your flexibility, try out the latest flavor at Yogurtland, or chase some waves. Forgive someone on your black list and stand on the weighing scale – you will be lighter. Wipe your mind clear of expectations before approaching a kiss. Close your eyes, inhale deeply, and let your taste buds enjoy the very first bite of a fresh fruit tart even if you have to run an extra 400 meters tomorrow. Give every feeling, every emotion, and every sensation a complete chance to make an impression. Experience each of the five senses in its purest form. Let the moment indulge you. Let the feeling overwhelm you.

Remember, space is limited. You’ve got to squeeze out the past and the future so you can squeeze in the present.

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